Psychologists tell us that a strong support system of family and friends is necessary for a happy, healthy life. In today’s world, that should be easier than ever since we can connect to each other so easily over the Internet. On social media, most people have hundreds of “friends,” often from all over the world. Yet, psychologists also tell us that more and more people, including an alarming number of very young adolescents, are suffering from a sense of social isolation and depression. If we are so well connected through the Internet now, how can this be?
The Need for Deeper Connection
Clearly, something is not quite right or complete about our ways of connecting to each other. Perhaps, although we are connected to more people than ever, we are not connecting deeply enough. After all, how many of your Facebook connections do you really know? And what do your posts on Twitter and Instagram really reveal about you? Do they really speak about the reality of your daily experience, or is it just a censored image of yourself, the parts of your life you are willing to reveal?
While it is harmless fun to post cute selfies or endless pictures of your charming kids, these posts usually do little to help us tackle the more difficult aspects of life. They really only represent the exterior façade of our lives, the identities we most want the world to associate with our names—career triumphs, exciting vacations, our lovely family, and so on. But how can we go deeper in our connection, to really feel satisfied within ourselves and in our relationships with others?
Connection to Yourself
The first step toward a more complete and fulfilling sense of connection is to connect with yourself. In my teachings, I always emphasize that one question is central to the process of enlightenment: “Who am I?” If you do not know yourself, there is no hope that you can ever be at peace with yourself or with other people. To answer these questions honestly, you have to go beyond the labels of the world—your job, family status, bank balance, etc.—to the core of who you are. So, who are you?
This question can take years of careful spiritual study to answer honestly, but the willingness to look inside is the first step in that direction. If you look beyond the surface level egoic identities, you’ll see there is a higher version of you living within you—your soul or True Self. If you focus on that, rather than on external identities, you’ll see the vision of the highest potential for your life. Walking step-by-step toward that vision, you will be of great service to the world, and loneliness and sadness will vanish as you connect heart-to-heart with the humanity that you serve.
The Greatest Connection of All
If we learn to connect from this deeper level of ourselves—from our True Self and not from our egos—we will be able to use our technological “connectivity” to much greater advantage. Can you imagine how beautiful the world could be? People from all over the world can connect on the level of the soul. Where before people saw competition, greed, and warfare, they could find cooperation, mutual respect, and co-creation of a better world.
This can only come to pass, however, if people are willing to acknowledge the ultimate connection and oneness of all things. The Internet connects computer systems to each other, but another kind of “web,” the web of life and existence in this universe, has always been there. So, let’s take this beautiful chance to connect truly—first to our own true nature, and then to the hearts and souls of other human beings, and finally to the cosmic energy that underlies all existence.
To learn ways of connecting to your True Self, you can consult my book, Connect: How to Find Clarity and Expand Your Consciousness with Pineal Gland Meditation.